BlackBerry Storm Review! From a iPhone 3G switcher!

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by TK B$K, Jan 12, 2009.

  1. TK B$K macrumors 6502

    Nov 21, 2007
    Portland OR
    Hey all, Ive been getting a few comments a messages asking for a review after posting pics of my Unlocked BlackBerry Storm (on AT&T) and i thought id just give a little review!

    This is coming from a weeks use with it after switching from the iPhone 3G

    I bought the original iPhone the day it came out (6 hour line wait baha) and it was great, upgraded to the 3G the day it came out also. Its been fun but i always felt soo "restricted" using them, kinda like a "big brother" phone or something. im not trying to bash on it at all, i loved the iphone and i own many macs but i just wanted more freedom!

    So now here i am with the new BlackBerry Storm 9530 from Verizon wireless (UNLOCKED for AT&T) and i gotta tell you i havent been happier!

    The phone is a blast, very fun to use and very very packed with useful things!
    Its a step up from the iphone (in my eyes) with the first things being the screen. Its a 3.3" screen running at 360x480 which is slightly higher than the iphones. AND IT SHOWS! The screen is plastic tho, but a very strong one. I was able to take my keys to it and not even get a scratch on it! BUT the biggest thing is that the screen yes is a full button, and when i say that i mean the whole screen clicks down. Now this is cool. You can touch anywhere on the screen to preform some operations but most require the full click! It feels pretty neat and makes typing feel like a full keyboard! I think its a selling point for me, to have the feel of the keyboard on a touch screen.
    Below the screen are 4 softkeys. Call/Send - Menu - Back - End.
    With all blakberrys and their owner will agree with me, the Menu button (one with the BB symbol on it) is the power button. One click of this anywhere on the phone opens a beautiful list of so many options its amazing. This phone can do it all and more! The top of the phone there are two more very soft keys hidden below the flush 1 piece edging. The lock button, which does the exact same as the lock button on the iphone, and the Mute button, which also does what it sounds like. Theres then a Volume rocker button as well as 2 user programable buttons (one on each side) which you can make do anything. Very useful and well placed buttons.
    It comes with a beautiful 3.2 Megapixel camera WITH flash that takes amazing pictures in every lighting condition. Veryyy impressed with the camera. It also can record good sized and quality videos that get saved to the included (get this) 8gig Micro SD card!! The card comes free with all 9530 models! Its also equipped with a 3.5mm Headphone jack a rare on most phones these days.
    Its running on a 624MHz CPU loaded with 192MB of RAM and 1GB of onboard storage. (mostly for the system). Its a pretty fast phone hardware wise. Its also has a 1400mAh Lithium Ion Battery. Which i can get a full days light useage untill it is dead around 9-10. pretty good time. Its powerfull but like youll read in the next part, its held down by its OS.
    Currently im running and i think its a pretty stable release. With little lag and memory leak its a great touch screen OS. The menu's are easy to navigate through with many finger gestures to help you on your way. This OS is packed with anything and everything you could WANT! From SMS and MMS messaging all the way to the Browser and WORD,EXCEL and POWERPOINT to go apps make this a serious task machine. Theres to many apps to mention as alot can be download but ill list a few, Browser, Clock, Camera + Video Camera, Instant Messaging, Maps, MemoPad, Tasks, Calculator, Voice Notes, Voice Dialing, Password Keeper, BrickBreaker, Word Mole ect..
    Theres many more apps on here that arnt included on phones such as the iPhone which would actually cost money! To me this is a great feat. Alot of productivity and entertainment comes from this phone! The neverending "do whatever you want menus" as i call them live up to there name, you can litterly highlight anything click the menu button and get a huge list of seriously anything to do. Send it, email it, move it, delete it, change it, options anything! Makes the phone live up to the BlackBerry REP. There is its downfalls. Such as memory leak or loosing memory from running applications. From a clean Storm you start with pretty much 50mb or App Memory that gets used and replaced with apps running. Its kinda a drag if your doing alot and things start to go slow and you need to close a few apps and sometimes do a full battery pull for a refreshed memory. Its no biggie it doesnt happen that much. I just think that the OS could be more stable and lag free in an upcomming release. It really just comes down to the hardware being YEARS ahead of the OS it feels like.
    The phone as i said comes pre installed with a 8gig MicroSD card. It gives you the freedom of 4,000 songs or 16,954 photos, or 11 hours of both recorded video and movies. Great to have something like this included! Can also be upgraded to i 16gig cards. The Media apps are great, one click of the actual Media App brings you up to beautiful menu letting you choose between Music-Videos-Ring Tones-Pictures-Voice Notes. Clicking music gives you a sort of all black themed iphone music app look. Clicking a song will display its name, album, artist and Album Artwork if loaded on. Video and ringtones does the same as the music just with.. you guessed it.. video or ring tones. Pictures brings you to a menu of folders where you can view your loaded pics or the pics you can take is a thumbnail view of rows of 3x3. you can click on a photo, zoom, pan around then flick your finger to switch to the next one same as iphone. BUT you then can click the famous Menu button and choose to send it, copy it, move, rename, delete it, send to myspace/facebook, email, send MMS set as anything, ALOT more. Really this is a phone of freedom! Voice notes gives you the option to see all your recordings and record more, a simple app that is productive.
    The Storm uses a connection CDMA 3G, as well as GSM 2G (EDGE). If you have the storm on Verizon (its actual carrier) youll be given the joy of using the fast 3G for emails, browser, and all other apps that use the internet connection. As for me and anyone else who uses or wants their storm unlocked, you STUCK to the 2G EDGE using the SIM card. Its no biggie its still decently fast... actually who am i kidding EDGE is slow as !@%#. Its useful with email tho. The biggest downfall is... NO WIFI! Unbelievable. Other than that its solid. Call clarity is excellent and the speakerphone is incredible! Ive never heard such a crisp and loud speaker on a phone. GREAT for playing music.
    Unlocking the Storm is a task but is a joy to use when unlocked!. If you have Verizon and have been a customer for over 60 days all it takes is a call to Global Support and a little sweet talk to get the 15 digit unlock code from them. If not and your like me your option was to buy a 800$ one from ebay OR payfull retail price 600$ and unlock it myself ( i have years of phone unlocking experiance, its not something you can just do with the storm, its a home built program and actually pretty hard to operate) THEN your not done, depening on what carrier your going to use (T-Mobile and AT&T only right now) You have to delete certain files, replace them with custom service packs from your carrier and put all the pieces back together! Its a job but i enjoy doing it and now have a pretty sick phone on AT&T. If anyone is interested more about Unlocked Storms PM me.

    This phone is a great phone, i look forward to using it more in the future and helping people with it. I think its a great start being BB's first Touch Screen phone and it does indeed need work, and that will come with future-soon-to-be-soon UPDATES!

    I give it a 9.0 out of 10.0 seeing as the OS could use some tweaks.

    If anyones has any requests or questions feel free to PM me or post in this thread!

    Im a happy first time BlackBerry OWNER NOW!


    Sorry about the dust!
  2. bobfitz14 macrumors 65816


    Oct 14, 2008
    wow that was amazing. too bad all Blackberry's have to have a data plan, or i would be sold on it. that seems like a very good phone in every way shape and form.
  3. synth3tik macrumors 68040


    Oct 11, 2006
    Minneapolis, MN
    When my iPhone broke I started looking into other options. The storm was one of them, although only briefly.

    The OS is nowhere even close to the iPhone. Yes the iPhones OS needs work, but it is much more complete.

    I have never been a fan of BB's form factor. It just seems all wrong to me. When I hold a BB it does not feel like it sits correctly in my hand.

    BB has questionable build quality. I know some of the steps taken to speed up manufacturing time, usually resulting in lower quality. I have also had my hands on a few that would not be considered fully functional.
  4. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    I agree with you regarding the screen. However, I used the keyboard and it is not nearly as nice as the iPhone. I like the pop up letters of the iPhone and the BB just lights up UNDER your finger. That is odd to me tbh.

    Overall, the Storm is indeed a contender, but still needs some work. What I did not get to test was the browser. I'd love a full comparison of the two (iphone and storm).
  5. SmartIndianKid macrumors regular


    Apr 1, 2008
    Is Verizon a must for you?

    Blackberries on Sprint, AT&T and T-Mobile do not require data plans. That's a Verizon thing.

    But if you do require or prefer Verizon where you live, that seems like quite the detriment.
  6. Acorn macrumors 68020


    Jan 2, 2009
    I own a Blackberry Storm. Its alright. Not worth the trouble unlocking to get working with ATT though. I think a better option for ATT users is the blackberry bold. Its better then the storm.

    Im thinking of downgrading to the Blackberry curve 8330. I much prefer a hardware keyboard instead of touchscreen. the storm was a good effort but it would have done better with a non moving screen.

    Lastly the build quality on the storm is extremely poor. even a loose battery cover effects the screen click on the corners. not cool. its just a battery cover. it should not effect the screen at all like it does.
  7. Nabooly macrumors 6502a


    Aug 28, 2007
    I too have the BB storm and i love it. Its honestly the best phone I have ever had.

    Now I cannot say that it is better than the iphone cause I haven't thoroughly used the iphone (just messed with it in the store).

    The keyboard is probably my favorite part of the phone. Also the screen is amazing.
  8. otep1760 macrumors regular


    Sep 4, 2007
    can you create custom music ringtones?

    i know its not a huge deal, but just curious
  9. TK B$K thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 21, 2007
    Portland OR
    Yes sir, you can use any song in your library as a ringtone. You can also sync your itunes music to it!
  10. uiop. macrumors 68020


    Jul 22, 2008
    Grand Rapids, MI
    An odd switch...kinda like someone going from a Mac to a PC, but two each their own. Glad you're happy with it. ;)
  11. TK B$K thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 21, 2007
    Portland OR
    It kinda is to tell you the truth, but in this case its a win win situation.
  12. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Really? I found it much easier to type on a Storm than on an iPhone, simply because of the whole 'landscape typing' thing. If I was able to type in landscape mode all the time, I'm sure the iPhone would be nearly identical to the Storm.

    Anyway, it's nice to hear of Mac users who can actually look beyond the logo and see that there are alternatives to the iPhone. I have a Nokia touchscreen (5800, XpressMusic, Tube, whatever) that I really like as well. Comes with an earphone remote, buttons on the side, a dual-LED flash with the camera, a better camera, better (i.e. bigger) keyboard in landscape mode, etc.

    I can even use it with my winter gloves on, or a stylus. Can't do that with an iPhone, and I'm not sure about the BB.
  13. QCassidy352 macrumors G4


    Mar 20, 2003
    Bay Area
    Definitely try the storm before you say that. I've used one, and it's a nightmare... in my opinion. Here's what I didn't like:

    - Typing is difficult. The fact that the screen depresses means you're necessarily slowed to a rate of speed nowhere near what you can do on the iphone (or other bb, for that matter).
    - It's kinda brick-like. Doesn't feel good in the (my) hand.
    - It's not a touch screen in the way iphone users would think of a touchscreen. It's more like they kept the same bb OS but replaced the trackball with your finger. So it's still the same kind of scrolling and such. Clearly a copy and paste job on top of what they had rather than building the os from the ground up for touch.

    Then of course there's the fact that there aren't the apps that there are for the iphone. That's a total deal-breaker IMO. But of course, it's not really a flaw with the storm, per se, just something that makes the iphone great.

    Anyway... try it out. Some people like it, some don't. I find it very user-unfriendly, but that's just me. Obviously the OP had the opposite experience.
  14. TK B$K thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 21, 2007
    Portland OR
    Everyone has there own taste. When i first held the storm i thought i was kinda blocky too, but it feels pretty good after holding it for a while. Typing is slower than the iphone just because it takes that extra second to make the satisfying click! I also sugest you try before you buy. its not for everyone
  15. gadgetgirl85 macrumors 68040


    Mar 24, 2006
    I'd like to get a Blackberry one day but I like how the iphone is so seamless to sync with the mac. Is a Blackberry the same?
  16. TK B$K thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 21, 2007
    Portland OR
    Well... ive had troubles with the Storm, since it just came out not alot of programs are for it, but finnaly found a couple and am able to sync my entire itunes library, contacts and ical!
  17. spencers macrumors 68020


    Sep 20, 2004
    Wow, lack of 3g and wifi is certainly a dealbreaker.
  18. TK B$K thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 21, 2007
    Portland OR
    It has 3G if your using it on verizon, if your using it on anything else unlocked then no it doesnt. and yeah no wifi is kinda a bummer
  19. iBookG4user macrumors 604


    Jun 27, 2006
    Seattle, WA
    It looks like a good phone for if you can't get the iPhone. I used one in the store for a while but I personally didn't like the whole screen being a button personally. I have used the iPhone since the original one came out and nothing on the BlackBerry really seemed like a night and day difference to me.
  20. deathbyart macrumors regular

    Feb 4, 2008
    It has ups and downs... Sometimes I love it, but there has been times I want to throw off a bridge.

    Attached Files:

  21. TK B$K thread starter macrumors 6502

    Nov 21, 2007
    Portland OR
    its got bugs, hopefully they get fixed in new updates!
  22. GP1138 macrumors newbie

    Feb 1, 2008
    Tested it out for a while in the mall... I didn't like it at all. IMO the biggest thing the iPhone has going for it is a seamless, flawless UI. Everything is smooth and it is built for use with your finger. When I first got the phone it was like everything came together after the first few days. You have to change how you think of using a cell phone.

    The Storm is not like that. It's still got the clunky UI, and the clicky screen feels like a cheap gimmick. It feels like the entire screen bends toward where you're pushing, which decreases typing performance because there is always a differing amount of effort to press on different parts of the screen. You also have to wait for the screen to come back up and accept the next "keypress" which is milliseconds but when typing... it counts.

    iPhone's typing model is much more suited to the touchscreen... I have a program that pulses vibration when I hit a key, which is all the haptic feedback I need. It allows me to know when I have touched an input key and doesn't require any delay before I can type the next input.

    The biggest thing about the BlackBerry Storm is that the portrait keyboard is still their damned SureType keyboard. Why take a limitation of their 16-key pad and translate it into a virtual device? If the phone is supposed to be that revolutionary, surely it should demand some sort of acclimation from even longtime BlackBerry users? And when I changed the option in the menus, I was presented with a standard 2-ABC 3-DEF style keypad. :confused::confused::confused: So outdated. No other manufacturer understands the importance and convenience of being able to whip out your phone at a stoplight and tap in an address one-handed to navigate quickly. Apple's portrait virtual keyboard fills this role PERFECTLY once you're used to it. No sliding, no fumbling with rotating the device, it's just there when I need it.

    Lack of Wi-Fi and 3G just kills. I started with a regular iPhone on AT&T/Cingular (when I started it was still Cingular) and then unlocked the iPhone and used it on T-Mobile. Now, in my area, T-Mobile's EDGE speeds are a little better than AT&T's. I have an unlimited internet plan with T-Mobile. I then switched to the T-Mobile G1, which is a good smartphone but a cruddy one-handed device, at least until the mid-January "cupcake" update comes out. I liked the G1, but I had the chance to trade it straight up for an iPhone 3G. I did so, a week before the yellowsn0w 3G unlock came out, and I'm so glad I did. I missed the ease of use of the iPhone. The G1 was nice, but complicated. Having one button really does streamline things. I found myself hitting the wrong key on the G1 and mistakenly sleeping the phone, then having to unlock the phone and again attempt what I was trying to do before.

    It would be nice to have a higher level of customization within the iPhone UI, and I honestly like some aspects of BlackBerry's UI, but the iPhone's is smoother and in this case more suited to the hardware. To me, the "screen as a button" concept is a cheap gimmick that isn't suited to text input.

    Maybe if I had a chance to use the device for a longer period of time I'd get used to it, but I was not interested in using one again after I picked it up at the mall.
  23. bobfitz14 macrumors 65816


    Oct 14, 2008
    Verizon is a must (not necessarily a bad thing), i'm in high school so i still live with my parents and they foot the bill, so i'm under their family plan. my mom said that when i have the money they'll drop my line if i want to go to AT&T for the iPhone or whatever, but that would be in over a year and a half (i'll consider it when i'm in college), but until then i can't justify the whole point of having my own bill when they'll pay it for me if i'm under Verizon.
  24. DeepIn2U macrumors 603


    May 30, 2002
    Toronto, Ontario, Canada
    You realize that you spent so much money for a smartphone which a primary function has been reduced by switching networks (your down from roughly 500Kbps+ data speed to 140-180kbps PEAK relying on EDGE), right?

    Why not just simply wait out the current rumors and see if the NAM 3G version actually debuts? Even if I had to cash I'd never do this. Sure its your cash, your decision, and your right ... but all for the love of touchscreen?? Why not just get a Bold and wait for the Storm with 3.5G on AT&T or any other NAM provider in the next 4mths??
  25. Dmac77 macrumors 68020


    Jan 2, 2008
    Never mind. Just read up on the storm a little more.


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